Learning the lesson all over again

April 27, 2009

by Herald Journal & Enteprise Dispatch Editor Lynda Jensen

People come in different packages and every so often, I am reminded again that what the outside looks like is irrelevant to the inside.

How many times will I meet a new person, who looked one way and acted another? I don’t understand why I need to learn these things over and over again.

Some of the most beautiful people I have ever met can be described as average, or downright unattractive. It really depends on their heart, attitude, and priorities.

Nevertheless, this idea was proven to me once again by Scottish singer Susan Boyle, 47, who astonished a British audience – and the world – with her singing. Check out the clip on the newspaper blog (note: you really have to watch it all the way through to appreciate the situation).

She walked onto the stage of “Britain’s Got Talent,” which is more or less the British version of American Idol in a general sense, and the audience dissed her so much that she lost her train of thought answering questions.

They rolled their eyes and heckled her because she happens to be a plain-looking older woman; short and plump. She isn’t the processed, pre-packaged songbird that we’ve come to expect from singer hopefuls.

Then she started to sing, and her voice was incredible. Everyone was speechless; some were left in tears, and even Simon Cowell was dumbstruck, staring at her like an adoring puppy.

She received a standing ovation, and has received 100 million views of her video clip.

Most people I know cried when they saw it because of the overt lesson that was so clearly taught about judging a book by its cover. She taught a lesson to millions that they will not forget easily.

What I really like about her is her unprocessed nature and her simple, straightforward character. Before, during, and after the audition, she didn’t let her dream of being a singer change her behavior. She stayed true to herself.

She doesn’t put on the dog, or pretend to be something she’s not. And she persevered beyond the expectations of others, with courage.

Being a woman of substance, she continues to set the example for other women by saying she doesn’t plan to change “one little bit” and doesn’t need a makeover. “Why should it matter as long as I can sing?” she told the London Times. “It’s not a beauty contest. Maybe I’ll consider a makeover later on. For now, I’m happy the way I am – short and plump.”

She says “What’s wrong with looking like Susan Boyle? What’s the matter with that?” Nothing is wrong with that. And if it is a beauty contest, perhaps we should change that.

To see see Susan Boyles' Facebook page, click here. There are more than 20,000 comments on it, and she has about 1.6 million fans registered there.

Paying it forward

The Christian radio station KTIS has been encouraging listeners to pay for the meals of others. For example, if you go through a drive through, someone might pay for the person’s meal behind him or her.

This kind of thing happened to me at the Grounds in Cokato, where I ordered an expensive drink and she handed me this note:


You don’t know me, but I’ve just paid for your order. No gimmicks – it’s just something I felt like doing. I heard about people doing things for others on radio station KTIS at 98.5 on the dial. They call it “the drive thru difference.” Maybe you’ll feel like doing it for someone else!

I heard that KTIS loves to share the stories on the air. Their phone number is (651) 631-5050. I hope this encourages you today!

Signed, the stranger in the car behind you.”

Quote of the week

“Miracles are a retelling in small letters of the very same story which is written across the whole world in letters too large for some of us to see. ” – Christian author CS Lewis